AB Electrolux is not in settlement talks with the US Justice Department on its bid for General Electric’s appliance business, a lawyer for Electrolux said on Thursday. The two sides are now preparing for a trial which will start next week.
The US Justice Department asked a federal court in July to stop Electrolux, which makes Frigidaire, Kenmore and Tappan appliances, from buying GE’s appliance business for $3.3 billion. According to US media, the two sides go before a judge on Monday.
According to Electrolux lawyer, Joe Sims, “There are no settlement talks under way. There is no additional settlement being considered. I don’t think there’s any realistic possibility that there will be a settlement.”
Retailers to be called
Sims said that Electrolux would call top executives of both Electrolux and GE’s appliance business, as witnesses as well as executives from retailers and homebuilding companies.
The Justice Department has argued that Electrolux and GE, along with Whirlpool Corp, make 90% of the stoves and ovens sold to big builders and property managers in the United States. The department said the proposed deal violates US antitrust law, which is designed to stop mergers that would raise prices for consumers.
Electrolux maintains that companies such as Samsung and LG Electronics are moving into the US market for appliances, diluting its market power.
The case is United States v AB Electrolux and General Electric Co, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, No. 15-1039.